19 February, 2012

Right here.

"Wherever you are, be all there."  I read this recently and have been trying to live it, but it's hard.

"The most important person in your life is the one right in front of you right now."  A former co-worker said this to me one day during a long conversation about life, work, relationships, God.  This was one of the things I appreciated about him so much; he was the most father-like figure I encountered during my work day, and often a stop by his office to ask a work-related question would turn into an hour-long conversation about anything but work.  He modeled the very advice he gave:  The most important person in his life at a given moment was the one right in front of him.  Everything else, everyone else could wait.

But this, too, is really hard to do well.  We have so many people in our lives and so many ways of staying connected with them (how deep that connection actually is is a topic for another time).  For some people, some seasons of life require distance from those who know and love them best.  Naturally, then, their minds and hearts are usually a little preoccupied with things several times zones away.  Important things.  It is hard to turn off that instinct.  But sometimes the gifts, the epiphanies, even, only come by closing the laptop, pushing "pause" on the homeward-bound thoughts, and looking at what is right here.  Sometimes I manage it.  Sometimes I don't.  But sometimes I also remember eternity...and briefly the burden of time lifts.  If you think about it, we've got all the time in the world.  So we can afford to pay attention to right here, right now, one person, one conversation.

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